Divock Origi and Nat Phillips are two of Liverpool’s biggest cult players. Origi is held in high esteem for his clutch goals, while Phillips was arguably Liverpool’s player of the season in 2020-21 after coming into the side to shore up the team’s defence.
Unfortunately, neither player has seen much action this campaign and potential transfers away from Anfield have emerged.
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Origi is linked with a transfer to Italy as the pair of AC Milan and Atalanta are said to be interested. AC Milan want Origi as the replacement for the ageing Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Meanwhile, Atalanta would likely pair Origi with established strikers Duvan Zapata and Luis Muriel. Although the Bergamo club could move one of those two strikers on.
Origi has five goals in 10 matches in all competitions and averages a goal every 79 minutes in all competitions. Liverpool may be unwilling to sell Origi due to his excellent form this season, despite playing him a limited number of minutes.
Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah are set to miss matches in January due to the Africa Cup of Nations. Their absences could prevent Liverpool from selling Origi until the end of January.
Klopp has recognised for some time that Origi is too good to sit on the Liverpool bench. The Liverpool manager has even expressed his surprise that Origi wasn’t signed by another club last summer.
Divock Origi vs Barcelona, 2019 | Liverpool Poster Print Football Wall Art Gift Memorabilia
In the case of Nat Phillips, he was kept at the beginning of the season for two reasons. For one, he was rewarded for his play in the second half of last term. The second reason was to see just how well the trio of Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk, and Joe Gomez held up physically. Add in the recent arrival of Ibrahima Konate, and Klopp and company wanted enough cover if needed.
With Van Dijk and Matip once again showing just how brilliant of a defensive duo they are, Phillips’ minutes have been limited, to say the least. Just 24, Phillips has played a mere 224 minutes for Liverpool this season. West Ham are linked with Phillips and could pay £10 million for him. Craig Dawson and Issa Diop as his only senior options David Moyes has at West Ham currently to play in central defence.
There is always the chance that Phillips, or Origi for that matter, chooses not to leave with Liverpool fighting for trophies on four fronts. A transfer in the summer of 2022 makes far more sense from a Liverpool perspective and potential for both players. Phillips is currently injured with a fractured cheekbone.
If Liverpool are actually serious about signing Jarrod Bowen from West Ham, which was reported last summer, then Phillips could always be used as part of a deal to bring the forward to Anfield.
Regardless, if Origi or Phillips leave in January or the summer of 2022, it will be a sad day to see both cult players leave Anfield.
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